Sunday, December 25, 2011

What's in the box?

Go go!

My new hat

Lucy & Mommy


Strawberry hat

Lucy & Daddy

Christmas PJ's

I'm not touching it...yet

Christmas Eve

Lucy & The Tree

A much needed nap

Lucy in a box


Christmas hat

X-mad with mommy

Friday, December 23, 2011

Don't take my picture, help me!!!

Poor Lucy... she was exploring all the nooks and crannies at grandmas house and decided to try to crawl between the two arm chairs. It was a terrible fail, as she couldn't move forward and couldn't back out. Instead of rescuing her immediately, I grabbed my camera.

I'm glad that grandma was right there because I did have to lift one of the chairs to free her and it required a second pair of hands.  Lucy survived, but I doubt she'll ever view the garbage compactor scene in Star Wars without a faint traumatic memory.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Friday Night Solo

I'm a supporter of a unique concept started by the church I attend called Luther's Table. It is a cafe, pub, non-traditional worship space in downtown Renton. This not-for profit place has a pastor leading the show and custom brewed beer served by volunteers. It's a crazy concept to bring the welcome and community aspect of "church" to people who are not likely to show up in a chapel on Sunday.

I'm turned on by it because I'm spiritual but not churchy. I don't quote the bible, I don't expect God to speak to me in matters of life, and I certainly don't think my attendance on Sundays will earn me anything other than the peaceful feeling I get.

Tonight a benefit concert is being held to keep the doors open. We attended the "gala dinner" a couple weeks ago and I was going to opt out of tonight because we had already had a babysitter event this month and I (selfishly?) felt I had done my part.

Well, I'm not one to say no to direct requests for help. So, in addition to selling tickets for the last 3 Sundays, today I baked cookies and got here early to be a ticket taker.

Jason and Lucy were going to come and we had her all dolled up in super cute holiday pj's. I left the house at 6:10 and they were going to come at 7. I received a sad text from j that said:


She's asleep. :(

See you when you get home.
- J

Jason is at home watching over a snoozy Lucy while I'm manning the ticket table. I think he's also providing tech support. I wish we were hanging out together but I appreciate updated anti-virus.

The concert I didn't want to attend has been amazing. I hope Jason is enjoying his night of almost bachelorhood. Once the tech support is done I'm guessing he'll watch some of those shows that are in the DVR that I refuse to watch...Real Housewives of King County. (kidding)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Did I mention that I cut my hair?


I'm pretending to be a regular worker bee today. I'm attending a meeting in downtown Seattle and instead of driving I opted to commute by bus. For the first time in almost three years (since I started shacking up at Jason's condo in 2008) I took the same metro bus route that took me to MegaBank for almost 10 years.

I was a bit excited to work out the timing, the bus fare and had some hope that I might run into a former bus friend or two. Maybe I just wanted to brag about how good life is, new(ish) fabulous husband, mildly cute baby, great list goes on and on these days. It didn't work out the wayI had planned, two buses were clustered and the bus I was on didn't stop at the park and ride where the majority of "my" bus friends connected. It was a quiet ride into the city and I was able to make a dent in my book.

Getting off the bus downtown is kind of a strange thrill. It's dark, wet and people of all circumstances are everywhere. The business people zip by carrying their needs for the day in all manner of shoulder bags or back packs. The people who spend their days and possibly nights are tucked under bus shelters and doorways with their needs stashed in bags that are closely guarded.

I passed a gaggle of people who were coming up Marion street from the ferry. At Second Avenue they split into two groups moving in separate directions. There were calls of "have a great week end" and "Merry Christmas, if I don't see you!".

While this has been fun I am glad to be able to "commute" to my office across the hall from my bedroom. Getting up at 5 and spending no time with Lucy this morning is not how I would like to spend every day. I'm extraordinarily fortunate to get to play with her for an hour each morning. Before I know it she'll be 13 and won't want to play on the floor with me before school, so I'm soaking up these days while I can.

My meeting is at the Seattle Harbor Club, which is fantastic because if it is super boring I can stare out the windows at the view of Puget Sound. Oh relax, I'll pay attention. One of my fab co-workers is speaking and I have a list of super uncomfortable questions to ask him when we get to the Q&A portion of the program.

1) When you first lost your hair, was it gradual or kind of all at once?
2) I heard you voted for Sarah Palin, can you explain that?
3) I "Zillowed" your house value and I'm wondering if you plan on continuing to pay your mortgage or let the bank have it back?

I'm SURE he will see the humor in it. No?! You don't think so...oh well maybe I'll stick with supportive comments that highlight how truly brilliant he is. BORING.

Well, I've successfully killed the 45 minutes I needed, and am off to start my day as a faux-business person. Too bad I'm looking forward to the event, spending the day further downtown in the shopping district would be fun too.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Spaghetti Head


Lucy can now be found standing in her crib, in the port-a-crib (aka the Lucy Containment Device) and at the coffee table.  This new skill is exciting and it is great to have an upright kid vs. the swaddled or sitting kid.  However, at 3:00 am, this skill is rather frustrating because while she can get up, she cannot get back down on her own.  She can "fall" to a sitting position, but that is generally quite traumatic and causes loud squawks of anger.

She's been sleeping really well, but last night was messy in that I had to do a 3am diaper refresh which flies in the face of don't pick up the kid between bedtime and morning.  The books say that getting a middle of the night snuggle is counterproductive to sleeping through the night.  All that is well and good, but a 90 pound wet diaper is not acceptable.  She simply did NOT want to go back to bed after the diaper change and was rather loud about her displeasure.  Jason and I took turns going back in to her room to  lay her down at the pediatrician recommended 10-15 minute intervals.  I will confess that my tolerance for the panicked "I'm sitting and I can't lay down" cry is pretty small and my version of 10 minutes at 3:20 in the morning is more like 6-7 minutes.

Jason asked me what I hear in her cry that tells me it's more than "I'm awake and bored" and rather  "I need help!"  I can't pinpoint it, but I can hear it.  There's a tone in the cry that sounds more alarmed than irritated and manipulative.

The 'funny' thing is that she was a pill at 3:00 am and then at 6:00 she was happy and flirty (see the pictures as evidence.)  You can't harbor any resentment for twilight behavior when you get smiles like that in the morning.

You can't stay mad at this face!

Monday, December 05, 2011

Playtime at the grandparent's house

Playing with grandma's boots

I own this section of the floor!

Friday, December 02, 2011

Post Pediatrician Update

Miss Lucy is 19 pounds 8 ounces (in a heavy diaper that I put at at least 4 ounces). She's 28.5 inches tall, which means that when standing flat footed she's 2 feet tall. Such a big girl.

We are on target nutrition wise, and developmentally.  Her use of words should become more clear in the next 3 months, and hopefully the loud squawking will abate somewhat.

Where we got into a bit of, well, not quite trouble but gentle advisement from the doctor was regarding our sleep habits.  She suggested that we stop the middle of the night feeding right away.  So, after a discussion we decided that Wednesday night was the last night of a bottle between 12:30 and 4:30.

I was nervous about her reaction and it wasn't so great, but it wasn't terrible either.  The first wake up I did a bad thing and gave her the pacifier and she zipped right back to sleep.  The second wake up, I waited the 10 minutes before going into her room and sure enough, she put herself back to sleep (after a period of intense fake crying.)  I know it was fake because of the lack of tears and the lack of longevity.

She woke up again around 4:45 and I waited 10 minutes before going in and she put herself back to sleep.  It made me wonder how many times I've gone to her when it wasn't really needed.  The other thing that made me realize we are doing the right thing is that she didn't wake up at 6 ready to eat her mattress.  She was the same happy kid who was thrilled to eat breakfast at 7am.

We'll see how tonight goes.  We hope that by Monday the idea of a bottle at 12:30 will be long gone.

Then we can work on the pacifier.  If we get it gone by her first birthday we're done with it.  If we still have it at 18 months, chances are she's a kid with a pacifier for ages and ages. We're going to eliminate it from daytime use (except in dire emergencies.)   Of course with an airplane trip in our future we can't say for sure that we're going to opt for baby training over the blissful silence that the pacifier provides.

I guess part of this training thing is parental training too.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Happy 9th Month

I think we might just survive this first year of parenting. Lucy is officially 9 months old as of today.  She is crawling, but really wants to be walking.  She is babbling (mostly nonsense, but we talk back and she seems to like it.)

We have the two cute teeth, the top two teeth should be next but could arrive in up to 3 months from now.

Lucy is happy to be standing and will play with her activity cube for long periods of time.

She is somewhat uninterested in the Christmas tree, it helps that we've given her some great things to keep her busy and when she finds herself at the tree she is greeted with a calm, but firm "that is not for Lucy".

Her sleep patterns of late have been more of a challenge and I'm not sure if it's the cold we've been passing around to each other, or her growing pains or our failure to keep the pacifier out of the crib.  Either way, she has brief wake-ups during the night and is still having a light feeding about 6 hours into the night.  The last week or so she's been waking up at 5:45 or earlier and that is not fun.  We take turns with who gets up in the middle of the night and then who gets the morning, but the morning is pretty easy in that she generally just comes back to bed with us.  I do love that morning time before we start our day, but with Lucy's new mobility it is a far more active time than it use to be. We do get parent specific snuggles which is awesome and she's very vocal about wanting us both around.

Trips to the grocery store or any store where shopping carts are the norm are super fun.  Lucy loves the visuals and the movement.  To her it's a giant roller coaster.  She flirts with all the people and the entire experience is far more social than it ever was as a single person or as a twosome.  Since there's no requirements to become a parent (other than some kind of child procurement) I wonder what it is that makes you think that people with kids are more accessible? I don't mind the interaction with strangers, but it is remarkably different than before.

Lucy has not started the "grabs" or the "I wants", but we will not be immune from such behavior.  There was a sweet little being at Target the other day whose dialog sounded like this:

"Grandma, I want this"
"Grandma, and this is what I need."
"Oh and I want this"
"This too, Grandma"

Grandma looked beat and was not throwing the "needed" items into her cart, but it was clear that shopping with her Angel was getting on her last nerve.  My hope is that we are able to cure Lucy of the "I wants" pretty early on and that she learns the difference between need vs. want and not to pester sweet Grandma for "things."

We do think that dinners out with Lucy are over for a long while.  It is not that Lucy is ill-behaved, it is that she doesn't have command of her voice just yet and any attempt at communication is frustrating and LOUD.  Even at a rock n' roll place like Red Robin, we were uncomfortable with her squawking.  In spite of the fact that we had come prepared with food, activities and anything else she might need it was not a pleasant meal.   This is not a horrific development, we were expecting it and know that eating at home is better for us anyway.

 Today is Lucy's 9 month pediatric appointment and we're looking forward to the check in on her height and weight.  She seems fuller in the face, but I don't think we've got a chunky baby on our hands.  We'll see what Dr. Robin has to say.

My other pediatrician questions are related to food.  We're not supposed to give Lucy milk until 1 year, but the books say that introducing cheese and yogurt is ok.  I want to confirm this before the joy that is yogurt passes her lips.

Lucy has been eating more finger foods lately.  She has nibbled on Cheerios (a staple), rice, well cooked carrots, edemame, fish, bananas and broccoli.  The ladies at school gave her green beans and peas.

I opened a can of black beans to add to my salad today and will give her a few of the sweet beans to try this evening.  Anything she can pick up, and gum that is healthy is a good thing.   My fear of transitioning to solid foods is waning and I am confident we'll do just fine.  Lucy will take the goopy baby food up to a point and then push the spoon away as if she is full, but will nibble on the finger food treats as long as we will dole them out.  My guess is that we're going to have to transition sooner rather than later to more 'real' food vs. goop for nutrition purposes.  Since we're not loading her up with cookies we should be just fine.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Monday, November 28, 2011

Thanksgiving Weekend 2011

Because Jason's employer will not entertain the idea of vacation during the busy holiday season, we will likely not be traveling anywhere for Turkey Day.   I miss the trip over the pass to see my family, but the adult sisters are acting like children again (still?) and thus the family get together is rather tainted by their inability to communicate, forgive, or have an ounce of perspective.   Still, I missed seeing my parents and especially since having to cancel our previously planned trip due to a small case of the plague.  (I am feeling better though - still have a cough, but my voice is back and other than a date with a box of tissues every 10-15 minutes I think I will survive.)

Wednesday, Jason was able to leave work an entire hour early so he and I zipped down to The Rock and enjoyed an entire hour of happy hour.  The one-on-one time is important.  We do love hanging out as a three-some, but it's hard to get into detailed conversations with the Peanut around.

That night, after Miss Center of Our World  went to bed we started making our part of Thanksgiving dinner.  We were on deck to bring stuffing for the family.  We chopped onions, celery, apples and de-cased sausage.  It was a team effort, but by 7pm our kitchen smelled fabulous.    We made enough stuffing for 15-20 people and felt we had plenty.  I had a bit of trouble going back to sleep after the 1am infant sleep interruption and checked the Internet for important life updates and saw that our Thanksgiving Day hostess said that she was looking forward to all 27 guests.  27!?  I knew the recipe would not stretch to 27 and debated about jumping out of bed and running to the grocery store for another onion, apple and other much needed supplies for a second batch.  Thankfully, reason set in and I eased back to sleep.  (The cough syrup with codeine that I've been taking at night time was also reason enough not to get in the car.)

We (Jason) did make an emergency run to the store Thursday morning while Lucy and I (mostly me) made breakfast.  She helps by hanging out in the kitchen (sometimes in the high chair, and sometimes on the floor with a rubber spoon.)   We whipped out a second batch of stuffing thus making our house smell even MORE heavenly.   Lucy went down for nap which allowed us to gather everything we were taking.

Jason's young cousin and his wife are expecting their first child in May and since they are college students they don't have any extra funds nee, I venture to call them "starving students."  As an aside, I have a friend whose kind of girlfriend broke up with him because I called her a 'starving student'.  I think she may have been overreacting and was a bit crazy to boot.  In the end, he met someone else and is in that "happily ever after place" with a reasonable woman who can hold her own against his erudite wit. I think Miss Starving can (to coin a phrase) suck it!  Anywho... we packed up lots of items that Lucy required and now, eight months in does not need or want anymore:

  • Giraffe Swing (allows the infant car seat to be connected and thus a sleeping infant can be continually rocked and ideally stay asleep after car rides.)
  • Baby bathtub 
  • Bouncie Chair - this battery operated vibration chair was a life saver for us.
  • Bumbo - a soft plastic 'chair' that cradles the infant in an upright position so they can "sit" before they can sit.
  • Infant Car Seat accessories (they get the infant car seat at Christmas.)
  • The remainder Maternity tops (some were so nice that I didn't want to give them up, so giving them to the new mama felt better than donating to charity.)
  • The Potterybarn for Kids activity mat.  Lucy wouldn't stay put on an activity mat to save her life right now.  Her whole world is an activity mat.
It felt good to rid ourselves of these items.  The house feels less weighted by baby stuff.  Of course, our main family room is being taken over by things, but we make an effort to pick everything up each night so that our baby world transforms back into adult world, even if it is for 2 hours and I nap through the most of it, it's still good to pick up the blocks and toy cars.

After Lucy emerged from her nap we loaded up the car and headed to Duvall.  In spite of the rain it was nice to drive up there without fear of being snowed in, flooded in, or any other kind of dramatic weather event.  Dinner was nice but there were NOT 27 people on hand and thus we came home with a lot of stuffing.  Oh well...better to have too much.  There was no drama or super exciting events that occurred during the family gathering. One year a relative stepped away from the table, went upstairs to his room and pulled out a gun and shot a squirrel who had been running along the fence in his back yard.  I don't think I need to say that no one will ever go to their house for holidays ever again.  Jason said to me "could you imagine your dad's reaction to that?  Heck he'd drop to the floor, grab the side arm that is in his walker and take aim against the host."  (Sorry Dad, but I think you would have been an unfortunate guest at that party, everyone else was shocked and pissed, but I think you would have been ready to take the host out.)  We were at Eric's that year dodging uncomfortable conversation with his mom's strange "doctor" friend.

So, with the enjoyable and firearm free holiday behind us we headed home.   Jason had to work Friday, but had planned to go in early.  Actually, he had planned to go to Target for Black Friday door busters, and had set his alarm for 4:45.  We had a rough night with Lucy up multiple times and then when we finally got her back to sleep the power went off.  No biggie right?  Well, we have to manage the computers and the battery power back ups (which aren't designed to keep you up and running during a power outage, but to keep your systems from a hard surge shutdown).

With the house eerily quiet it was hard to go back to sleep but I eventually did.  I did hear the power pop back on and heard Jason get out of bed to manage something.  As the selfish wife I am, I dropped back to sleep and woke at 7:30 when Lucy started to stir.  7:30!?  Unheard of.  Anyway, Jason was long gone and I was sad that I hadn't heard him come back to bed or get up to leave.  Later I learned that he was so "untired" after all the power stuff that he opted to simply stay up.  He reset all the clocks and computers.  Then he got dressed and went to Target and Best Buy.  He was at work by 6am.

Lucy and I spent a quiet morning together then we packed up and took Jason's car for an oil change.  I know, we should have been shopping and spending lots of money, but alas a 30 minute side trip to Old Navy was all I could muster.  

Because of Jason's early arrival at work he was also freed early and we started our "long" weekend at 2.  Yeah!

Saturday we were at Costco when they opened and picked up some much needed items as well as some things that 'should' be for Christmas but simply aren't.  Jason found this amazing activity cube with lots of doors to open, levers to pull and balls on wires to grab and play with.  We opened it and Lucy was instantly in love.  Heck, we put up the shiny Christmas tree and all the lovely ornaments and she could care less.  She has the activity cube!  She stands at it for long periods of time and then when she either gets bored or her little lets start to give out, we sit her down and she plays with the sides of the cube. It's a huge hit.  (and no batteries needed.)

Our tree is up, and because we're not hosting Christmas this year we did tone it down on the decor.  My beautiful upstairs silver and red tree is still tucked safely in its box.  Maybe next year, or the year after that.  My pretty tree will live again!

We tried to watch a movie - Horrible Bosses and it was an aptly named movie, but the "Bosses" was not necessary   Heck we simply turned it off and went to bed.

Sunday was a quiet day with some shopping and cooking.  We've been enjoying two new cookbooks and have been making at least 1 recipe a week from one or the other.  Last night I made a chicken, rice, carrot and edemame dish that was pretty scrumptious.   I'm becoming a convert to dark meat vs. white meat - especially for cooking.  I still want my fried chicken to be the breast piece, but when making a dish like a casserole the dark meat holds up better.   (Gosh, I can't believe I"m blogging about white meat vs. dark meat.)

So, that was our exciting weekend.  I know you're totally jealous. 

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Friday, November 25, 2011

oh did I forget to mention Lucy is crawling?

And today, she did something really new in that she pulled herself up to standing from a sitting position.

I think we're in trouble.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The perils of online shopping

I love online shopping, the packages that arrive at my door remind me of how much I loved getting mail as a kid.  The only bummer is when shipping errors happen.

During the wedding planning there was an unfortunate delivery event with our custom fortune cookies (yes, a required wedding item), where they were delivered to the wrong address and the recipients actually signed for my package.  They opened them as well, thus we ended up getting an emergency shipment of new, untouched cookies.

Where our house sits on the street it is a bit of a challenge to find us, but FedEx, UPS and the postal service custom delivery people have all managed in the past.  Sadly, there was a delivery "fail" yesterday.

According to the tracking information the (tired, weary, cold and wet) UPS person delivered my package from (can't tell you) company at 4:40 last night.  I was home at the time and there was no quick knock on the door, nor was there a package at our door.  Lucy and I were here and playing downstairs, we would have heard the door.

Phone calls to UPS were frustrating, first they say it was delivered and did I check "around my house" as if the driver would walk past my covered front door and throw the package over the fence into the unlit backyard, then after getting attitude that the package was delivered as addressed the "nice" customer service agent asked if I checked at my neighbors.   This really gets under my skin, if the tracking info says it was delivered to 123 Main, how on earth could it be at 125 Main?  Wouldn't the tracking info reflect that alternate address?

I did do a walk about in the neighborhood and have found no evidence of alternate delivery, and even disturbed the neighbors (who don't ever step foot outside) to confirm it didn't get scooped up in their daily deliveries.

I called the shipping company (per UPS' instructions) and they are re-sending the package, but it irritates me that UPS could deliver the package incorrectly and then be so damned adamant that they could not have made an error.  It's their arrogance that I resent the most, the suggestion that I'm too stupid to find a big package at my front door is aggravating.  "Have you looked outside?"  Well, no UPS I figured you'd break a window to set it inside and thus it never occurred to me to look on my own porch where you say you left the package.  GRUMBLE.

Plus - even if it was delivered to my door and some random person happened to walk down the long driveway to take if off my porch, I was home, so why not knock on the door?  It's the northwest, at 4:40 pm when someone is home you can see it, lights are on in the house.  I can understand not knocking on the door of an unlit house, but when you see the warm glow of life the least you can do is 'rap on the damn door.'

ok - end of rant.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Parents of the year

Jason, hands down, wins husband/dad of the year award for taking care of Lucy while I was sick.  Granted he didn't really have a choice, the simple act of getting up to do anything would cause my fever to spike and I had to change pj's multiple times during the weekend simply to avoid the chills.  (Sweat through the pj's then get cold because of the wet items.)  But, he made it ok for me to sleep the illness off without any guilt that he was tired or needed a break, and for that I'm very grateful.

Here's a parenting secret that no one wants to say out loud - no matter how much you love your baby it is exhausting to be "on point" at all times.  Her needs come first, and you don't realize how much you need 10 minutes to collect your own thoughts until you don't have 10 minutes.

There is a fair amount of guilt when you have feelings of relief when the baby finally takes a nap and you can sit and 'veg' for a moment.  There is (internal) pressure to get the house spiffed up or take care of those things you can't do while the baby sleeps.  Sometimes this works.  Case in point, Sunday while Lucy napped Jason and I were able to put up the holiday lights on the front of the house.  When you're solo parenting, you need that nap time to rejuvenate yourself.  Sometimes it doesn't work, when I was sick, nap time was a much needed dad break.  Our house was a messy land of bottles, toys, half sorted mail, un-stowed groceries and other evidence of projects half completed.

I know that I have a good partner because he didn't complain about this weekend of solo parenting nor did he think it was a burden.  Parenting is something we knowingly signed on for and it is fantastic when there are two of us to make it easier, but both of us are aware there will be times it is a single parent activity.    Ages ago, I heard the husband of a friend say he was "babysitting" and my girlfriend flipped out a bit and had to remind him that he was not babysitting, but parenting.  Technically it is just a label, but for my friend the difference was the implication that his being "on point" was unusual.  It has been over 10 years and this man has showed himself to be an excellent father, so this verbal misstep wasn't a critical parenting fail.

Before the baby came, we did lots of reading and a common theme came up over and over. Parents are tired.   "I feel like I haven't slept in 15 years", "I haven't slept the whole night through since 3 months before the baby was born", "I'm asleep before my head hits the pillow."  I would confirm that indeed, I like these parents am tired, but it is not an overwhelming weariness that some of the girlfriends described.  I'm thankful for that, especially since I'm doing this parenting thing 10-15 years later than most of my peers.  I was worried that the 'tired factor' would be like a fog that would plague me every day.

Now for the reason that I get parent of the year.  Last night we had a bathtub / poop situation.  I thought the grossest thing I would have to deal with in relation to blow outs that escaped a diaper, or boogers.  Oh boogers are so very icky.  <gag>    Lucy is so happy in the tub, she loves to slap at the water and chew on the float toys. Bath time is a great way to spend 30 minutes with a tired girl at the end of her day.  I really do love it and while it oddly conflicts with my need to be doing multiple things at once, sitting on the floor by the tub is a treat.  Last night, well, not so much.

I went to get a towel (2 feet away from the tub) and came back and she was making the "intense" face.  I knew what was happening, but my options were slim.  I could freak out and grab the naked, wet and actively pooping child and put her on the floor, in the clean towel I just grabbed, hold her in mid air or I could let her finish and then take her out of the tub immediately.    I chose the last option - it seemed the least messy.  I did try to scoop up the toys (but ended up bleaching them all anyway) and wash cloths that were in the water.

Poor Lucy - once she was done she knew immediately that things were not right.  I mean, normally there is poop and it stays in the diaper until Mom or Dad make it go bye-bye.  It is very contained and she never has to see it.  She was unhappy with the situation and did not mind the quick extraction from the tub.  I got her cleaned up, a sponge bath after the bath, dressed and then took her down to dad (who was making me dinner).  Then I had to come back and clean it up.  I considered just moving to a new house, but the idea of packing up all those DVD's makes me nauseous.   When I was done, the tub was properly cleaned and the bleach smell as abated as of this morning.   The cleaning fairy comes Friday  and she may be cleaning the cleanest tub in town, but that's OK with me.

I used the "sanitize" mode on my fancy washer for the first time (towels, rugs, wash cloths, my shirt) and I feel safe in that the situation has been contained.  Lucy doesn't seem traumatized, which is nice.  I would prefer for her not to have poop hangups.  I'm a bit traumatized but I guess that is to be expected.

Logic says there will be something MORE disgusting in my future, but I'm thankful I can't imagine what it might be.

I feel confident that this month, Jason and I have earned our 'parents of the year' badges.  Someday, when Lucy is 15 or 16 I'll retell the poop in the tub story in front of some new friend or maybe even a boyfriend.  Oh, I can't wait.

Monday, November 21, 2011


Here is my sappy list of what I'm thankful for this year (in no particular order):

1) A warm home
2) hot beverages on a cold day
3) A car that starts when you want it to
4) health insurance
5) not being pregnant (it was fun, but once was enough)
6) the tiny little socks in my dryer
7) a girl who naps
8) our holiday lights are up and ready to be turned on Friday afternoon.
9) a husband who cooks
10) the cleaning fairy who comes every other week and cleans our bathrooms
11) Miss Alexis, Miss Valentina and Miss Miriam at "school" who love Lucy so much
12) Online shopping
13) feeling better
14) friends
15) family
16) soup
17) a trip to Maui that is planned and mostly paid for
18) snugly blankets when I'm cold
19) air conditioning when it is super so hot outside
20) people who are witty
21) people who are forgiving
22) a working vacuum cleaner
23) Thanksgiving at someone else's house.
24) naps
25) a husband who quietly asks "are you awake?" and can tell the difference between the yes that means yes, and the yes that means I was asleep.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Taxi cab attorney

I survived the sickness enough that the urgent care doctor told me I could travel to my business meeting Tuesday.  My flight was somewhat easy, but I was the slow lumbering person you hate to get behind at the airport.   Eventually I made it to sunny, but chilly Las Vegas (65... brrrrr)

My taxi driver initiated conversation, asking where I was from and why I was in town.  I said for a meeting and he kept asking questions so much so that I shared that I was in information security and through the course of the conversation that I had worked at a bank.

Serge (not his real name) perked right up and said "You worked for a bank?  What do you know about short sales?"

"Not much, I've done some reading."

"I got this paper here that says that they are selling my house and I need to know what it means."   Then he hands me this 5 page letter from Bank of America.  As he's handing it through the glass I'm telling him, I'm not a lawyer. "no, but you seem smart, please read it and tell me what it means."

I quickly scanned through the document and it was pretty clear.  He had a mortgage for $200k, the bank had accepted an offer for $130k and would be writing off the remaining $70k.

He asked me to explain the fine print which essentially said that Bank of America could NEVER sue him for the  remainder amount of the loan, that he would be entitled to zero monies as part of the transaction, no funds would be handed to him even to hand over to the other party and that the deal would close on December 15.

We had a brief chat about Primary Mortgage Insurance and how the bank would be getting any money from any claims related to PMI on his loan.  It was then that he said that he had saved for years and years and bought this house with 20% down so he didn't have PMI.  He asked why if Bank of America would accept $130k for his house from Eduardo Somebody, why they wouldn't take $130 from him so he and his family could keep the house.   That is the question of the decade Serge.

At the end of the short cab ride, Serge asked if he could sleep that night.  I told him that yes, the deal seemed good, he didn't have to pay anything, he wasn't in any trouble and as long as they were ready to move by December 15th that yes, he could sleep at night. At the hotel he thanked me profusely and took my cab $25 fare and was off.  Heck, he almost hugged me.

I felt pretty good about our interaction until the cab ride back to the airport and the charge was only $12.50.  

I guess no good deed goes unpunished.

I did sit down at a 1 cent machine and put in $5.  I walked away when my winnings totaled over $50.  I felt that for a business trip that was a nice conversion rate.  Other than that little moment in the casino I was in my room.  I napped, took a bath, ordered room service and went to bed early.  So much for Terri's Wild Vegas Evening.  The meeting was good and really worth my time.  It sucked getting home at midnight last night, but much better than another night away from home.

Lucy's First Haircut


She squirted my head!

Lucy is checking out Andrea, her stylist

She looks worried, but is doing fine

My curls!

Andrea asked me to hold this comb, so I'm going to eat it.

Almost done

I'm spiffy

A video from the salon:

A little bouncy video of the end product:

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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Sick day

Today is day three of being sick. What started out as a cough has turned into a fever, dizziness and a loss of appetite. (You know it's bad when I don't want to eat.) Jason is a good nurse and has taken Lucy to Target to a) have a reason to leave the house and to b) pick up needed sick day supplies. I think those supplies will include anew toy for Lucy and soup for me. Even though I'm sleeping a lot I seem to be awake at odd hours.

Last night while waiting for the cough syrup to take effect (codine) I decided that I'm irritated at the "Occupy " people. These people are camping out in cities all over the US protesting big business, corporate greed or rich people. I really cant tell. What I do know is that these are people are mad about something and don't seem to be giving up. I don't think they are asking for anything, thus they have no endgame for their protests. I guess they will there until they get bored. What makes me mad is that the occupied cities are spending $16,000-$20,000 per week to keep these yahoos safe, and I'm sure that these resources could be put to better use. How about spending this money on truly homeless kids, or education, or even the arts. I'm sure places like New York and Chicago are spending far more. I'm disgusted by this useless protest. 

 Not all my late night drugged musings are hopped up political opinions. I came up with an article for The Onion. Sadly, this online satire "news" outlet does not accept submissions from just any yahoo. So I'll have to publish my own story. (for those of you not familiar with The Onion you should know that it's a joke.) 

Man in charge of counting Earth's population loses count at 5,354,740,921 and has to start over. 

Bill Klinghoffer, the Earth's population counter explained what happened. "Everything was going really well until I took a break to update my Facebook status. When I went back to work it wasn't clear if the mark by Rajminder "Steve" Balakurapali's name was a tick mark or just a smudge. I studied it for a long time and just cant tell. Since I can't be sure I simply have to start over. Co-worker Joe Daviz has a different theory, "The holidays are coming and Bill is trying to get a bunch of overtime. He's a jerk! " 

Somehow, in the light of day it's not quite as funny as it seemed at 3 am. I guess there's a reason these things are left to the professionals.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Here are my thoughts on that...

Poor Kris Humphrey's, his tiny wife dumped him after only 72 days of wedded (bliss?).  The websites are all speculating if it was a sham marriage, staged for tv or if the love they shared was real.  Personally, I'm disgusted by the over the top wedding and the money that was spent on something that would be dead in 10 weeks.  It's not like buying a dozen roses where you love them this week because they are pretty and throw them out next week when they start to smell.  This commitment is supposed to be for the long haul - oh and no one said it wouldn't be hard.

In addition to enjoying the made for tv drama, many web sites and folks are also saying "sure Kim K. can get married for 72 days, but heaven forbid we should let gay people ruin the sacred bonds of marriage."

You've met me and know that I'm not against allowing same sex couples legally marry.  I understand that for some folks, their religion and upbringing has given them fervent and closely held beliefs that being gay is wrong, a sin or against the laws of God.  I respect that perspective, just as I respect the rights of those who don't choose to worship the same way I do to do it how or if they want.  My religion does not and should not affect the rights of others.

As much as I support the rights of all consenting adults to marry whom they like, I think the argument that another failed Hollywood marriage is evidence that they should be allowed to marry is tired.  I understand the logic, my gay friends are being told that getting married would hurt the sanctity of marriage (um, crock of crap btw) and then day after day there are public displays of people spitting on their vows.  Why shouldn't they point to Kim Kardashian, Britney Spears and others who have spectacularly failed to live up to the intention of marriage as proof that they (as a gay community) couldn't hurt it anymore than the rest of us.

I hope that one day "we" figure out that gay people are, and hold on to your shorts for this idea, the same as everyone else.  Let me say that again for clarity - gay people are normal people.  They will fail at marriage just as much as non-gay people, they will marry for money, status, security, popularity, health insurance and pretty bowls from Tiffany's just as often as the rest of us.  Some will stay married forever because that's the commitment they made, some will divorce when life gets hard, some will come out as straight and leave their families, some will cheat, some will get bored, some will find themselves and have to move on.  When those things happen to straight couples we sit back and say "whew, thank goodness it's not me" or "I wish I had that courage" but never ever do I think that what is happening at Tiger Woods' house or in the hotel suite the Kardashian's are being filmed at this week makes one iota of difference in my house.   My respect for marriage is not lessened by the thousands of couples that were allowed to marry in New York - in fact, seeing people that have been denied that right for years see their dream come true touched my heart.

So, should we stop imposing our religious beliefs on an entire population of people- yes.  Should we allow gay marriage because they couldn't do it any worse than we do - not really.  We should legalize it because it hurts no one and once we get over ourselves and our superiority on this topic we can focus on things that matter like Lindsay Lohan's latest court outfit and Justin Bieber's virginity or maybe hunger and homelessness.  Oh shoot, now I'm talking crazy.

Eight Months

My little bundle of happiness is 8 months old.  I am VERY careful to enjoy each moment because I can see how quickly she changes.

As you can see from previous pictures we are teething in earnest these days and that does result in some mood swings for Lucy.

She still isn't too keen on napping while at school so she comes home really tired and we get about 90 minutes with her (if we're lucky) to play, eat, take a bath and go to bed.  She doesn't snuggle in the evenings - she plays and then crashes pretty hard in her own bed.  I've tried the pre-bedtime snuggle and the only way it works is if I let her fall asleep in the bed with me, and we're not doing that.

Well, we're not doing that at bedtime.  I've succumbed to it twice for naps, and it's totally delicious.  She's so warm and sweet that it's hard to transfer her to her own bed, but I do it.  I do not want to do it at bed time because thus far we have a kid that goes to sleep in her own room, in her own bed and without too much coaxing.  I'm sure we'll have toddler sleep struggles, but the groundwork we're laying now is good.

We went to an Octoberfest party (Jason's fun cousins) and had a lovely day.  Lucy napped on the way up, while we were there, went to bed without much trouble and then slept the whole way home.  While she was awake she was fun and friendly.  She was hanging out with Uncle Doug and he stood her up on her feet - which is a VERY fun thing for Lucy, but he forgot that Lucy is 8 months and has not mastered walking like his 14 month old daughter has and he simply let go of her.  She fell over face first like a tree in the woods.  She didn't get hurt, but it scared her.  It was actually kind of funny, but thankfully Dad was right there with a parental scoop and soothe.  I had Doug's daughter on my lap so I poked her in the nose as pay back.  Everything must be even.

I talked to my brother today and he made it seem like his grand daughter who is a month younger than Lucy is saying Mama already.  Lucy is still on  "ayyeee yaaaaeee" and we'll get a "maaaaaa" or "daaaaa" but we think it's accidental.  I'm not worried about real words just yet.  Lucy appears to be developing right on track and since we have a few seconds before selecting our final college choice I'm going to relax on the talking front.

She's not quite crawling, but she's trying really hard.  She gets into position and then flops over to her back where she knows she can roll.   We torture her by putting all the good toys (like knives, scissors and glue) just out of reach.  When she decides she really needs to cut someone, she'll get there.

I know we're in trouble soon because she wants to be where she wants to be, when she wants to be there.  When we stash her in the pack n' play (baby jail) in the morning while we get dressed she bangs her little hands on the mesh walls as if to say "Let me out of this prison, damn it!"  It's a rough life with all the toys in there for those 20 horrid minutes.  We totally ignore her too, we don't talk with her, interact at all or even acknowledge that we see her during the baby lock-down. (sarcasm) It's hell and I'm sure she tells all the kids a school how awful we are.

Actually, because of the teething thing, I popped over to school late this morning and gave her a dose of baby tylenol.  I'm hoping that helps with a nap and keeping her mouth from hurting.  When I arrived she was gnawing on the leg of a less mobile baby.  Hey, when your mouth hurts, chewing soft things helps.  I'm sure little Al Jarreau hates having his leg chewed on by a cranky but cute girl, but until he learns to kick or roll away he's as good as any teething ring.   His name isn't Al Jarreau, I think it is Eduardo but when we were introduced I heard Al Jarreau and it kind of stuck.

The rough thing about day care is that the cute babies come and then age out.  I guess it will be good when we hit the 1 year mark and transition to the Toddler room because we'll already have friends.  It's cute when they are ready to move because the infant activities start to bore the babies and they are banging on the glass to the other room.  Thankfully we have four more months until it's Lucy's time to transition.  Four short short months.  Where does the time go?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Just an update


I was in Arizona last week for the security conference that doubles as a fantastic women's retreat.  I was so busy at the conference that there was no time to visit the pool.  In years past the conference was held in September and thus the lure of the pool was even more strong - in late October temperatures during the day only hit 95 degrees so you can see why it was easy to avoid.  In all actuality, normally I would have flown in the night before but this whole thing about wanting to spend time with my family really gets in the way of selfish-pool time.  Perhaps I'll be more inclined to work out a different solution next year.    I'll probably have to bring back a treat for the husband that looks like I purchased it for him rather than picked it up at a vendor table.  He's so smart about being able to pick out what was a freebie vs. what is an actual gift.

I got home late Friday and we were up and moving by 7am Saturday.  Lucy has no concept of sleeping in - well, actually for her sleeping until 6:30 IS sleeping in.  We went to breakfast then to downtown Seattle to pick up my wedding rings, that were being sized.  As we walked into the jewelry shop the look on the owners face said it all - the rings weren't there.  Bummer.  However, instead of having to head back down town later in the week or the following weekend the rings were shipped to me via FedEx.  They will be arriving today and require a signature, thus I am trapped in the house like Rapunzel, only with much shorter hair.  The delivery drivers don't tend to linger on the porch once they give the required knock (that is one rap on the door) and I'm not feeling very confident about my ability to quickly but safely navigate my staircase, so there is a silly sign on our door.  "FedEx:  I am HERE, but upstairs, please ring the BELL."  We'll see if it works. (For the record the jeweler was far more mad than I was about the rings not being done as promised and I'm sure he scolded his vendor in a scary way.)

I hated the idea of going to the conference without my wedding rings, so I worked up an alternate solution.  I have a diamond anniversary band from my single girl days and I paired it with the gold wedding band from my grandmother and together I looked sufficiently wed.  I've been wearing it ever since, but I want MY ring back.

After the useless trip downtown Saturday, we had planned to head back home to give Lucy time to nap before going to a birthday party in Orting (aka almost Tacoma).  She fell asleep in the car after breakfast so while I (and Jason's parents) went into the jeweler he sat in the car with Miss "only naps when she wants to" and was on the phone when we came out.  Not any phone, but the "on call" phone. So, we decided to take him to his office, drop him off take Lucy home and then pick him up on our 'way' to the birthday party.  Mind you, these locations are nowhere near on the same route but going home so he could get a car seemed like a waste of time. Famous last words.

I got the call that he was ready and Lucy who had woken up was back asleep so I zipped to Issaquah to get Jason and then we would swing back by the house to get Lucy and the grandparents.  When I arrived he told me to park the car.  (That was a bad sign.)  Apparently, as he finished the first emergency on call ticket and after he had called me, a second emergency ticket came in and he essentially had to start over.  Since he already knew what was required (and how terrible the documentation was) he knew it wasn't going to be a quick fix.  With time running short our plans had to adjust.  So, back home I went to get a second car, the baby and the grandparents.  We all went back to Issaquah and left Jason a car and then we went (without him) to the birthday party of a 1 year old.

Maybe it is because we were late, or because the party was in full swing but the event seemed chaotic and our hosts didn't seem to notice we were there.  We mingled and talked with other family members, helped ourselves to a tasty but tiny taco and got out of the way as a melting ice cream cake was given to the birthday boy.  That was the time that Lucy decided she HAD to eat and so it worked out that as everyone was packed into the living room around the baby, Lucy and I were tucked away in a different room.  I didn't really hate that.    We hung out for a little bit but once I got word that Jason was home I wanted to go home.  (Remember I hadn't really spent anytime with him since Tuesday.)  I felt badly about suggesting to Jason's parents that we go before gifts were opened, but they understood and back in the car we went.  Honestly, I feel like I spent the whole day in the car.  (Renton to Kirkland, to Seattle to Issaquah to Renton to Issaquah to Orting to Renton - yes, that takes a whole day and a ton of gas.)

Once we were home we opted not to cook and picked up pizza.  It was a nice evening at home but around 9pm the day caught up with me and all I wanted to do was roll up the stairs and sleep. We skipped church Sunday and let Lucy play all day.  It was nice, I needed a day "off".

Jason's parents left yesterday and I'm catching up with work.

Photo: Glorious sunrise over the Cascades

Photo: Glorious sunrise over the Cascades: The Seattle Times.